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  • Writer's pictureSouth Lyon Church

The 40 Challenge

I just love numbers. They are exact, precise, and to the point. Well, except if you have a transcendental number like “pi”. But aside from that, they give you fixed boundaries, something you can hold on to, and can show completion with--except if you have a repeating decimal. Ok, so numbers aren’t perfect, but I still feel a sense of comfort around them.

We see numbers throughout the Bible. We know that three is considered the perfect number; the summation of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Four is completeness; consisting of the four directions. Combined they bring us seven; another number we see a lot in Scriptures. Their product is twelve; again we can see the number of apostles and tribes of Israel there. It is just hard to get away from numbers in the Bible, especially if you are in the fourth book of the Old Testament.

But the number that I obviously want to focus on is the title; forty. It seems to come up again and again in scriptures. From the days of Noah when that was the number of days and nights that rain consistently came upon the earth to the years Israel wandered in the wilderness. The spies spied out the land for forty days. We may not know that after the time of Gideon, Israel had peace for forty years, or that Goliath taunted the Israelites for forty days. After the showdown on Mt Carmel, Elijah traveled for-- you guessed it, forty days and forty nights. I haven’t even mentioned the reign of David or Jesus in the wilderness, but you get the picture.

Well, I have a forty challenge for you. No, it doesn’t involve rain or eating, nor does it involve a period of years, but more days and minutes. I challenge you to take a forty day period and walk around or even sit for forty days. Take forty days and walk around a part of town praying for yourself, for us as individuals to be what we need to be in this town for God. Maybe go to the same spot each day for forty days and pray. If you’re not able to do that, then take forty minutes one week sometime in the next month to pray for all of us, as a group and as individuals, to be what we need to be. Forty days or forty minutes, take up the challenge.

But what if I mess up? What if I only pray for thirty-seven days instead of the forty that I had planned. Then there are thirty seven days that prayers have gone up. What if I only make it six days of praying and log only thirty-two minutes? Then that is six days of praying and thirty-two minutes that prayers have gone to the throne of God. Messing up is not important, doing something is.

I am out of town this weekend, but when I get back, I plan on spending the next forty days walking around the South Lyon area praying. Maybe for two minutes one day, maybe eighteen another, either way prayers will be brought to the Almighty God. Let’s pray and see what great things He can do through us!

Putting on comfortable shoes,



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